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Written by    Last updated: June 6, 2006

Romantic destination to rave about… Must‐see sights, perfect places for two – plus love bites and love potions, for the most romantic wining and dining.

Romantic destination to rave about

In a nutshell…

This Balearic party island is a sun‐drenched mecca for the likes of Naomi Campbell and Cameron Diaz, European movers and groovers, hippies, gays, drag queens and nudists. San Antonio, the island’s clubland, caters for those who want to strut their stuff through the night and sleep off the damage on the beach next day. Home to mega‐clubs like Manumission, Amnesia and Space, it doesn’t really get going until 6am.

Ibiza is known as the place to “go hedonistic”, and it’s certainly come a long way since the era of Franco repression. So much so that one British vice‐Consul resigned in shame over the behaviour of boozed‐up Brits!

But if gyrating on podiums becomes tedious, you can always go off and explore the quieter and more spiritual side to the island, first discovered by hippies in the sixties. Yoga centres, homoeopathy and natural health centres will help revive burnt‐out clubbers and add another dimension to the island.

Magnetic attractions

  • Privilege Club (aka Ku) This huge venue attracts up to 10,000 ravers a night, including stilt‐walkers and fire‐eaters. It features a dancefloor suspended over a swimming pool and a roof that retracts to reveal the dawn coming up. How romantic!
  • Manumission Club The largest weekly club in the world, with up to 100 entertainers keeping the lycra‐clad crowd in a good mood.
  • Cala Benirras This beach on the north coast is one of the most beautiful on the whole island and perfect if you want to escape the hordes and go off on your own for a little while.
  • Formentera This, the fourth and tiniest of the Balearic islands, is but a short 25‐minute ferry ride from Ibiza. It is less crowded than elsewhere, and there are many coves and bays where you might very well end up with the whole beach to yourself.

Romantic rendezvous

  • Es Vedra This is the name given to the ‘mystic rock’ to be found just out to sea on the north coast of the islands. It’s an area where there have been many reported UFO sightings, so hang around a while and… who knows?
  • Ibiza Town The capital of the island is like a medieval Disneyland, with its own castle, cathedral and cobbled streets. Absolutely perfect for an early morning stroll.

Love bites and love potions

The best fish restaurants on the island are to be found in the chiringuitos (bamboo and brush beach bars) situated on the more isolated beaches. The local liqueur is known as hierbas ‐‐ it tastes like cough mixture but is cheaper than other drinks. The stylish sunset bars, Mambo and Cafe del Mar in San Antonio, are perfect places to watch the Parade of Angels. Not exactly a religious procession ‐‐ more a crowd of flyer‐scattering and banner‐waving beautiful people trying to entice you into their clubs.

Propose here

On a day when you are not hungover, head to the island of Formentera by ferry and pop the question on an isolated west coast beach as the sun goes down. Under no circumstances do the deed in a club whilst under the influence…

To get you in the mood

Make the Venga Boys We’re Going to Ibiza your anthem, and Sky/C4’s series, Ibiza Uncovered, your research material. Any Ministry of Sound compilation will do too.

For an altogether different view of the Balearics ‐‐ as a haven for generations of bohemians, writers and artists ‐‐ see the novels and poems of Menorca legend Robert Graves.

Language of love

Feliz aniversario = happy anniversary

Te quiero = I love you

Felicidades = congratulations!

Casate con migo = marry me!

Stags and hens

For those who like to party round‐the‐clock, Ibiza is the perfect destination, with clubs banging out the backbeats virtually 24/7. The only time you won’t be able to dance is in the early evening, but then everyone’s got to eat and sleep some time!

Party until at least 6am so you can catch the bakeries opening for a pre‐sleep breakfast of warm, freshly‐baked bread.

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